What is Yoga?
Yoga is union. Yoga practices include a variety of poses (asanas), breathing techniques, and meditation. Often, Yoga asana is considered the physcal aspect of Yoga, though asana offers much more than a fit body. It provides us with the opportunity to directly access relationships with ourselves and others, and to uplift these relationships to a place where there is increased union or Yoga. We can liken the physical practice of Yoga to tuning an instument. Only when in tune will an instrument produce mellifluous music. Similarly, our bodies require tuning to produce sweet-sounding words and benevolent actions.
What is Jivamukti Yoga?
Jivamukti means "liberated soul", and Jivamukti Yoga is a method for the individual to achieve enlightenment through compassion to all beings. The practice will guide your body and soul to spiritual freedom, equanimity of mind, and improved physical well being.
Founders Sharon Gannon and David Life have been recognised as inovators by Yoga Journal and TIME magazine. They are pioneers in teaching yoga as spiritual activism/activation. Their unwavering focus of the original meaning of the word "asana" as seat, connection, and relationship to the earth is as practical as it is radical in this time of global conscousness shift. The method emphasizes both vinyasa as well as precise alignment, Yoga's ancient sacred texts and five-thousand-year-old traditions, and the psychothereapeutic benefits resulting from a steady practice.
Jivamukti has 5 tenets: Ahimsa (non-violence), Bhakti (devotion), Meditation, Nada (sound/music) and Scripture
Why practice yoga?
Physical benefits of yoga include increased flexibility, strength, a better functioning organ system, an increased ability to relax, better sleep, and an overall sense of vitality. Spiritual benefits include cultivating a more peaceful way to be in the world through the practice of letting go. Ultimately, Yoga will allow you to see who you truly are. It will allow you to experience a deeper peace unaffected by the constant inevitable change encountered by the body and the mind.
Do I need to be flexible and/or strong to do yoga?
No, though this is a common question asked by new practitioners. Yoga is not about performing the postures so that they look perfect, but rather performing the postures with perfect sincerity. With patience and time, flexibility and will follow. The only thing required is a sincere interest and ability to show up. If you've read this far, I suspect that this includes you. “Do your practice and all is coming” -Patthabi Jois
Can I start yoga at any age?
Yes! Yoga is truly a practice for all ages and is modified to accommodate any age and level of fitness. In fact, some of today’s most influential, not to mention physically fit yogis, are of advanced age. Not Convinced? Take a moment to search the Internet clips of Dharma Mittra and Bette Calman.
What style of yoga do you teach?
I teach Jivamukti Yoga Yoga. I have studdied several other styles including Baptise, Iyengar, and a myriad of modern hybrid styles, though ultimately the Jivamukti Method captured by heart. I teach Jivamukti because it works. The proof is in...the vegan pudding.
Where and with whom have you studied?
I completed 800+ hours of Jivamukti training in New York comprised of 300+ hours with Jivamukti founders Sharon Gannon and David Life and 500+ hours apprenticing with Advanced Certified insttructor, Jessica Stickler at the Jivamukti Center in NYC. Previously, I receiving my 200-hour teacher training and international certification at Samadhi Yoga in Sydney, Australia. I am a registered at the 500 hour level with Yoga Alliance.
What distinguishes you as a yoga teacher?
I have a Bachelors Degree in Health Science which provides me with expertise in Anatomy & Physiology, injury prevention, nutrition, and wellness coaching. Additionally, my beliefs may distinguish me. I believe that the Yoga you practice in your daily life is more important than your proficiency on your yoga mat. That said, dedication, flexibly, strength and equanimity all cultivated through the physical practice carry over to other aspects of your life.
Additionally, I am a certified Vegan Lifestyle Coach and Vegan Chef. It is a joy to share my knowledge of delicious vegan recipes that will support your Yoga practice, and to highlight that the mindfulness accrued on your yoga mat can be extended the dinner table.
Why do you to teach yoga?
Teaching is an organic result of my personal life-trek and provides me with the occasion to give back that which I have received. I don’t feel like I chose to teach yoga, but that it chose me. I feel the need to help others and for a short time I fantasized about becoming a surgeon. Since, I have yet to learn how to dsave a life, my intention is to serve as a guide so that others can see that they are more than just a body and just a mind. The teachings of Yoga tell us that if we want someting for ourselves then we must be willing to provide it to others first. On this level, I want to help others get free so that I can become free too...It's my wish to be surrounded by liberated beings.
Who has influenced your path as a teacher?
Jivamukti founders, Sharon Gannon and David Life have deeply influenced my path as a teacher and as a spiritual being. Additionally, I derive profound inspiration from those who have intensely touched my life, those who regardless of their interests do what they do with kindness, honesty, and love.
Personally, how has yoga impacted you life?
The greatest single impact is the understanding that life's ups and down are necessary for the soul's evolution. Moreover, the realization that years struggling, literally and figuratively tying myself into knots is requisite to learn that the critical process of Yoga is actually undoing and uncovering what is already present. The paradox is that in order to be undone we have to participate in the entanglements of life. Committing to Yoga practice is simultaneously an act of committing to life, reminding us to be present for it, breath by breath. With this magical shift in perspective, lessons learned on the mat are swiftly and perceptively transformed into a blueprint for life.